Review of Podkayne Of Mars by Robert A. Heinlein

April 1, 2010
Filed under: Reviews, SFFaudio essential 

SFFaudio Review

[Jesse’s Note: This is a first time review from one of my students. Rose sat down with a tattered old paperback copy of Podkayne Of Mars and a brand new Blackstone Audio CD audiobook of Podkayne Of Mars for a readalong – the result was this terrific review – Thanks Rose!]

Fantasy Audiobook - Podkayne of Mars by Robert A. HeinleinSFFaudio EssentialPodkayne of Mars
By Robert A. Heinlein; Read by Emily Janice Card
5 CDs – Approx. 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 1433251612
Themes: / Science Fiction / Adventure / Reproduction / Politics / Family / Gambling / Venus / Mars /

From the author of Friday and Rocketship Galileo comes this classic tale featuring the grand master of science fiction’s most remarkable heroine. Podkayne Fries, a smart and determined maid of Mars, has just one goal in life: to become the first female starship pilot and rise through the ranks to command deep-space explorations. So when she is offered a chance to join her diplomatic uncle on an interstellar journey to distant Earth via Venus, it’s a dream come true—even if her only experience with diplomacy is handling her brilliant but pesky younger brother, Clark. But she’s about to learn some things about war and peace because Uncle Tom, the ambassador plenipotentiary from Mars to the Three Planets Conference, is traveling not quite incognito enough, and certain parties will stop at nothing to sabotage negotiations between the three worlds….

This is the first Robert A. Heinlein audiobook, or Heinlein book, and my first audiobook that I have ever read. I also hadn’t read any Science Fiction before. This was mostly because I thought Science Fiction was just fiction that was “beyond reality,” so I wasn’t really interested in it. However, after reading and listening to Podkayne Of Mars, I found myself considering reading another. Heinlein’s idea, that to freeze babies and decant them whenever the parents want, is fascinating. Since many women are busy with their work and have no time to take care of their babies, I think this practice and technology may come true in the future. One issue for me was I didn’t really like Clark at first. He acts brusquely, seemed selfish and didn’t seem to care about his family. I was, therefore, impressed by Clark when he decided to become more responsible and caring.

Emily Janice Card, daughter of Orson Scott Card, narrated Podkayne Of Mars. Card narrates the whole 176 page story all as Poddy, except seven pages from the end when Clark, her younger brother, takes over. I think Card’s voicing of Poddy was in-sync with a sentimental, skeptical, and ambitious young teen. It made me feel as if Poddy was reading her own story. However, Card’s voicing of Clark wasn’t as harmonious. Probably, this was because she is female. Compared to 1979 paperback edition, Poddy on this cover doesn’t really look like Poddy. Poddy looks quite cynical. I much prefer the 1979 edition because there Poddy looks more of a sentimentalist.

Posted by Rose [장미]

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